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Specialist Physio’s Guide on Getting Back to Sport Whilst Dodging the Physio Clinic!
A physio telling you how to avoid the physio clinic? Believe it or not I would rather people did not get injured in the first place or, worst still re-injure themselves just at the point that they are feeling top of the world and ready to get back to their chosen sport. So yes, here is my advice on how to avoid re-injuring yourself on return to sport whilst dodging the physio clinic.
After an injury the best thing you can do to make things worse is to rush back to your sport at 100%. Remember your body is living tissue that needs time and gradual loading to get back to full strength and movement control.
Key word being ‘gradual.’ This means that when you restart your sport, for example running, you should aim for a steady increase from 0% back up to 100% in a staged fashion. We know that you are more likely to make your injury worse if you try to get up to 100% too soon!
How gradual is gradual I hear you ask?
Good question: There is no absolute rule or science to this. Lots of sources talk about 10% increases at a time. However, in my experience I have found the rule of thirds to work in most cases. Start at 33% of your normal, ensure that you can manage this without issue before any further increases. If that goes well, next time you train aim for about 66%. Third times a charm you should be approaching somewhere near 100%. This way you give your healing tissue time to adapt to smaller load changes rather than the larger jumps in training. This principle particularly applies to all those returning to training after a break. If however problems persist and limit your training for more than a week you should seek professional help!
What could be going wrong if this hasn’t worked?
You might be doing something technique wise in your sport that is causing you to re-injure, no matter how slowly you go back to it. You might have a weakness in certain muscles that are causing the injury so it will return until you strengthen these particular muscles. You might be tight or stiff in certain soft tissues or joints that need identifying and mobilising to enable you to be injury free. A physio will work out what things need addressing and will enable you to sort them out so you can get back to your sport, injury free.
I hope you have found my advice useful, if you have any comments or queries please get in touch by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or to book call 02075838288.
… and don’t forget to share this with any sporting friends!
About Anthony Adesanmi
Chartered Physiotherapist BSc (Hons) MSCP HPCP
Anthony qualified in 2003 from the University of Southampton and worked at St Thomas’ Hospital, private practice, schools and sports clubs where established an excellent reputation with some of London’s leading consultants and physicians.
He specialises in hands on techniques, acupuncture, sports, lower limb and spinal rehabilitation. He provides a service that is both personalised and informative ensuring timely and effective recovery. He is currently working towards a Masters qualification in Advanced Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy.
Anthony is highly experienced in neck and back issues from simple strains to more complex longer standing issues. He looks towards long term solutions for ongoing problems through thoughtful advice, targeted hands on therapy and the development of an appropriate specific exercise program with preventative lifestyle habits.
He is highly skilled in treating amateur and professional athletes ranging from the weekend warrior to international level athletes in areas including running, rugby, hockey, netball, dance, waterpolo and skiing. This experience has included leading specialist services for Running bio mechanics and training providing movement assessment, video analysis and bespoke pre-habilitation reports. His areas of interest extend to hip, knee and ankle injuries in the sporting population with a key emphasis on ensuring timely return to sport following injury and developing strategies to ensure minimal chance of reoccurring issues.
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